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Forgotten in a crisis: Addressing dementia in humanitarian response

GLOBAL ALZHEIMER'S & DEMENTIA ACTION ALLIANCE
ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE INTERNATIONAL
ALZHEIMER'S PAKISTAN
May 2019

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Every 3 seconds someone develops dementia and it’s one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Despite being some of the most at-risk in times of natural disaster, conflict and forced migration, there is a lack of awareness that dementia is a medical condition, meaning people with dementia are being neglected when they’re most in need of support.

This report investigates ways humanitarian emergency responses can protect and support people living with dementia. It draws on the experiences of people affected by dementia, Alzheimer’s specialists in affected countries, humanitarian organisations and inter-governmental organisations including the World Health Organisation and UNHCR.

Our findings reflect a wider issue of a lack of support for older people and those with disabilities in humanitarian response. We have found that people with dementia are systemically overlooked, due to a lack of global awareness of the condition and associated stigma.

The report is a collaboration between the Global Alzheimer’s & Dementia Action Alliance, Alzheimer’s Disease International and Alzheimer’s Pakistan.

Rapid needs assessment of older people Cyclone Idai, Malawi

HELPAGE INTERNATIONAL
MALAWI NETWORK OF OLDER PEOPLES ORGANISATIONS (MANEPO)
March 2019

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In early March 2019, heavy rains and floods affected the majority of the districts in southern Malawi. At least 115,000 were affected, with scores of fatalities, injured and missing persons. The situation intensified when Cyclone Idai reached Malawi, increasing the devastation caused by heavy rain weeks earlier. When Cyclone Idai caused the Shire river to reach capacity and flood, the districts of Chikwawa and Nsanje were among the worst affected. The aim of this rapid needs assessment was to inform the design of  HelpAge International’s own humanitarian response to the devastating impact of Cyclone Idai on older people in Malawi. The Malawi Network of Older Persons’ Organisations (MANEPO) and HelpAge International jointly conducted the assessment in Chikwawa and Nsanje districts in March 2019. The report also aims to support organisations operating in the affected areas to develop inclusive programmes and support advocacy for the rights of older people to be upheld in the response. The report contains key findings of the assessment, together with observations and analysis. 

The waiting list. Addressing the immediate and long-term needs of victims of explosive weapons in Syria

O'REILLY, Claire
et al
2019

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This report looks at the challenges linked to the use of explosive weapons in the Syrian context for the provision of adequate immediate assistance and to plan for mid- to long-term assistance to the victims of explosive violence, to ensure their full recovery and inclusion into society. It is based on data and testimonies collected from humanitarian agencies, actors and patients across all areas of control in Syria. The testimony of Farah, a Syrian girl injured during the bombing of her school, and of her mother, is shared throughout the report to illustrate the challenges faced by victims. 

This report was compiled from June to August 2019 and relies on multiple sources, including review of both gray and academic literature, published and unpublished data from INGOs working in Syria response, firsthand interviews with patients and Syrian humanitarians working both inside Syria and from cross-border locations, and expatriate staff from INGOs and UN agencies. Interviews were conducted at a distance during June and July 2019 with 12 individuals, among which: 2 patients; 3 mine action operators; 4 medical staff, and 3 humanitarian workers 

Psychosocial disability in the Middle East

BOLTON. Laura
May 2018

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A K4 helpdesk report, commissioned by DFID (UK), provides a rapid review of literature to provide best estimates of psychosocial disability in specific countries in the Middle East.

Topics discussed include:

Prevalence and different forms of mental health conditions and psychosocial disability

Factors influencing prevalence

Differences across demographics

Provision for those with psychosocial disabilities

Defying the barriers

KHONDKAR, Laila
HAQUE, Reazul Md
January 2018

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Research summaries, case studies and process documentation from “Inclusive Protection and Empowerment Project for Children with Disabilities (IPEP)” are presented.  The aim of the project was to build resilience and capacity among children with disabilities and to create a violence-free community for them. The project ran in five districts of Bangladesh i.e. Sylhet, Dhaka, Barishal, Rangpur and Gaibandha from 2014- 2017. 

 

The research topics were:

  • Understanding the Vulnerabilities of Children with Disabilities Living in both Government-run and Private Residential Institutions
  • The Vulnerabilities of Children with Disabilities from Low-income Households
  • Social Protection Schemes Relevant to Children with Disabilities and their Families 

 

The economic impact of inclusion in the open labour market for persons with disabilities

BEYER, Stephen
BEYER, Annie
2016

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"This study looks into the inclusion of persons with disabilities and its impact on the economy. Persons with disabilities have been included in mainstream, specialist and active labour market programmes over the years in the EU. During the first decade of 2000s, many countries have used the "Work First Approaches", which led people to work before any training. The work first approaches have during the previous times provided good employment without people having the skills. In recent times, an activation approach has been developed in order to ensure that people with more complex disabilities are included in the labour market. This created inclusion programmes that assist people in the job search process, like individual counselling, vocational rehabilitation etc". The report provides an extensive overview of studies and research on the economic impact inclusion in the open labour market for persons with disabilities can have for governments and public authorities and a more general overview assessing impact on businesses and individuals. This study provides a review of the relevant literature. Using standard methods, relevant articles in the English language (or with English language abstracts) were identified, published between 1980 and 2016. 
 

Abuse and denial of sexual and reproductive rights of women with psychosocial disabilities in Mexico

RODRIGUEZ, Priscila
et al
February 2015

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This report presents the situation faced by women with psycho-social conditions in Mexico based on the results of a year-long study. This research included the application of a questionnaire to fifty-one women with psychosocial disabilities who were either members of the Colectivo Chuhcan or received outpatient services at four different health clinics and psychiatric institutions in Mexico City. The main finding of this report is that the Mexican government has failed to implement policies that ensure that women with psychosocial disabilities have safe access to sexual and reproductive health services, on an equal basis with others. It is recommended this research be extended to the rest of the country to gain a clearer picture on the situation of the sexual and reproductive rights of women with disabilities at a national level

Torture in healthcare settings : reflections on the Special Rapporteur on torture's 2013 thematic report

ANTI-TORTURE INITIAITIVE
February 2014

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This resource is a collection of articles focused upon the treatment of people with psycho-social disabilities in health-care settings, particularly with regard to torture, abuse and ill-treatment, and reflecting on the Special Rapporteur on Torture’s 2013 thematic report.

It brings together contributions by more than thirty international experts in response to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Méndez’s thematic report, providing insights into essential topics and highlighting issues at the forefront of the intersecting medical, legal, and policy fields. It supports a commitment to tackling the challenges that continue to arise in promoting and protecting the human rights of persons in diverse healthcare settings globally

United Nations expert group meeting on mental well-being, disability and disaster risk reduction

UNITED NATIONS UNIVERSITY
et al
2014

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This report presents information from the Expert Group Meeting on Mental Well-being, Disability and Disaster Risk Reduction and highlights "to achieve sustainable human development that leaves no one behind, it is necessary to prioritise the mental health and psychosocial well-being of all people, including persons with physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments. It is also imperative to make DRR measures that are inclusive of disability and do not neglect persons with mental or intellectual disabilities. In this regard, the expert group adopted the recommendations indicated below for outcomes and follow-up with respect to (1) the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction at the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in 2015, (2) follow-up of the Third High-level Meeting on Disability and Development, (3) the Post-2015 Development Agenda/Sustainable Development Goals, which will be adopted in 2015, and other relevant international and national frameworks"

Expert Group Meeting on Mental Well-being, Disability and Disaster Reduction

Tokyo, Japan

November 2014

Disability inclusion in the Syrian refugee response in Lebanon

PEARCE, Emma
July 2013

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This report presents the key findings and recommendations from a four-week field assessment conducted by the Women's refugee Commission in Spring 2013 in northern and eastern Lebanon. Key findings are shared about the situation of Syrian refugees with disabilities, and recommendations are provided to the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and partners.

Towards preventing torture and ill-treatment in health-care settings

MENDEZ, Juan E
February 2013

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"The present report focuses on certain forms of abuses in health-care settings that may cross a threshold of mistreatment that is tantamount to torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. It identifies the policies that promote these practices and existing protection gaps. By illustrating some of these abusive practices in health-care settings, the report sheds light on often undetected forms of abusive practices that occur under the auspices of health-care policies, and emphasizes how certain treatments run afoul of the prohibition on torture and ill-treatment. It identifies the scope of State's obligations to regulate, control and supervise health-care practices with a view to preventing mistreatment under any pretext. The Special Rapporteur examines a number of the abusive practices commonly reported in health-care settings and describes how the torture and ill-treatment framework applies in this context. The examples of torture and ill-treatment in health settings discussed likely represent a small fraction of this global problem"
A/HRC/22/53

UNHCR mental health and psychosocial support for persons of concern

MEYER, Sarah
2013

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"This evaluation reports on how well the United Nations High Commission for Refugees considers and provides for the well-being and mental health of persons of concern to the agency. Through a survey of UNHCR field staff, extensive literature and policy review, and key informant interviews with MHPSS experts from academic institutions, international agencies and non-governmental organizations, this review provides insight into how UNHCR’s current activities contribute towards improved mental health and psychosocial well-being of displaced persons and how UNHCR’s current policy frameworks relate to established practices and frameworks in the MHPSS field"

Mapping exclusion

KOZMA, Agnes
PETRI, Gabor
November 2012

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This is a comprehensive report on the state of deinstitutionalization from institution-based services towards community-based services in the mental health field in Europe. The report consists of a comparative analysis of trends and policy changes in Europe based on a survey, and 32 country reports are presented in the annex covering issues crucial in the context of community care, such as data about institutional and community-based services, national mental health and deinstitutionalization strategies, information on guardianship and involuntary admission policies
Note: The report is in English, summaries are available in Dutch, French, Hungarian, Polish, Spanish, Romanian and Swedish

Inclusion through community based rehabilitation : lessons learned in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia & Mozambique 2009 - 2011

LIGHT FOR THE WORLD
2012

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"The LIGHT FOR THE WORLD Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR) Framework brought together 14 CBR projects in Ethiopia, Burkina Faso and Mozambique between 2009 and 2011 to share experiences and learning. This report reflects the experiences of the projects during this period and the lessons learned that can provide invaluable learning for other CBR projects. It also provides a useful record of the projects’ activities and outcomes, and enables future planning"

Mental health atlas

WORLD HEALTH ORGANISATION (WHO)
2011

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This report "represents the latest estimate of global mental health resources available to prevent and treat mental disorders and help protect the human rights of people living with these conditions. It presents data from 184 WHO Member States, covering 98% of the world’s population. Facts and figures presented in Atlas indicate that resources for mental health remain inadequate. The distribution of resources across regions and income groups is substantially uneven and in many countries resources are extremely scarce. Results from Atlas reinforce the urgent need to scale up resources and care for mental health within countries"

Mapping of child protection M&E tools

AGER, Alastair
AKESSON, Bree
SCHUNK, Kelly
July 2010

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The availability of effective measurement tools is a clear prerequisite for the strengthening of monitoring and evaluation within the field of child protection. This report provides a structured review of a sample of 124 child protection M&E tools
Note: Annexes are available to download in separate files

Mental health and development : targeting people with mental health conditions as a vulnerable group

FUNK, Michelle
et al
2010

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"This report on mental health and development is a call to action to all development stakeholders - governments, civil society, multilateral agencies, bilateral agencies, global partnerships, private foundations, academic and research institutions - to focus their attention on mental health
The report presents compelling evidence that persons with mental and psychosocial disabilities are a vulnerable group but continue to be marginalized in terms of development aid and government attention. It makes the case for reaching out to this group through the design and implementation of appropriate policies and programmes and through the inclusion of mental health interventions into broader poverty reduction and development strategies. The report also describes a number of key interventions which can provide a starting point for these efforts. By investing in persons with mental and psychosocial disabilities, development outcomes can be improved"

Training for impact : international training programme on development-oriented psychosocial care for communities affected by the tsunami and other disasters

FISHER, Steve
November 2009

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This report presents a BasicNeeds international training programme on development-oriented psychological care for communities affected by the tsunami and other disasters. Details are provided about the training programmes, the evaluations, the follow-up and achievements. Case studies and an analysis of the experience are highlighted. This resource is useful for practitioners interested in the development-oriented psychological care for communities affected by the tsunami and other disasters

Responding to children, young people and AIDS : collection of best practices under UNTG on AIDS, working group on children

June 2009

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This collection of best practices on the prevention of mother to child transmission; treatment and care for women and children with HIV; vulnerability reduction for youth; and stigma reduction, aims to contribute to experience- and expertise-sharing about tailored interventions to meet the needs of target populations. The publication was produced by the United Nations Theme Group (UNTG) on AIDS, Working Group on Children to contribute to sharing between UN agencies, NGOs and bilateral organisations and civil society. The Chinese Campaign on HIV Prevention for Children and Young People was launched by the Government of China in September, 2006 under the global campaign 'Unite for Children, Unite against AIDS'

Mental health aspects of women’s reproductive health : a global review of the literature

WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO)
UNITED NATIONS POPULATIONS FUND (UNFPA)
2009

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This report presents information outlining "the ways in which mental health concerns intersect with women’s reproductive health. It includes a discussion of the bio-psycho-social factors that increase vulnerability to poor mental health, those that might be protective and the types of programmes that could mitigate adverse effects and promote mental health." This review is useful for public health professionals, planners, policy makers and programme managers to raise awareness of mental health aspects of women’s reproductive health

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